If you have time to visit only one place to learn about the history and culture of Singapore, this is probably it. The National Museum of Singapore tells you the intriguing story of this country in a manner that is both fun and rewarding. Imagine standing in the midst of a vast darkened space surrounded by a massive video montage showing everyday life in Singapore while a rousing symphony plays in the background. That’s just a taste of the immersive experience you can expect here.
The museum hosts a dynamic range of events throughout the year—from art installations and festivals to performances and film screenings—in addition to presenting exhibitions involving historically and culturally important collections of artifacts. One of the latest immersive art installations – Story of the Forest by teamLab allows visitors to experience the treasured collections of the Museum being brought to life through a spectacular digital presentation.
You’ve probably seen images of Singapore’s national icon, the mythical Merlion with the head of a lion and the body of a fish.
The Merlion's body symbolises Singapore's humble beginnings as a fishing village when it was called Temasek, which comes from the same root as the word tasek ('lake' in Malay).
Its head represents Singapore’s original name, Singapura, or ‘lion city’ in Malay. Today, you can glimpse this legend at Merlion Park. Spouting water from its mouth, the Merlion statue stands tall at 8.6 metres and weighs 70 tonnes.
This icon is a must-see for tourists visiting Singapore, similar to other significant landmarks around the world.
As dusk falls, the shutters open at the Night Safari, welcoming you into a world of nocturnal creatures and their dimly-lit habitats.
Opened in 1994 and located next to the Singapore Zoo, the Night Safari is the world’s first safari park for nocturnal animals. This wildlife park is spread across seven distinct habitats, each home to its own array of fascinating creatures.
Your eyes will take a while to adjust to the darkness here, but once they do, you’ll be greeted by over 2,500 resident animals from over 130 species – including many indigenous to the region, such as the endangered Asian elephant, Malayan tapir and Malayan tiger.
The animals live in 35 hectares of dense rainforest. Friendlier creatures such as deer roam freely in the park while fiercer ones like leopards are kept behind barriers.
For those who prefer exploring the park on wheels, a 35-minute tram ride with live commentary takes you across seven geographical zones of the world, from the rugged Himalayan Foothills to the swampy banks of Equatorial Africa.
A nature park spanning 101 hectares (250 acres) of reclaimed land in central Singapore, adjacent to the Marina Reservoir. The park consists of three waterfront gardens: Bay South Garden, Bay East Garden and Bay Central Garden. The largest of the gardens is Bay South Garden at 54 hectares (130 acres).
Sentosa Island is a man-made island that was built for fun and recreation. The best attractions in Sentosa Island all share one thing in common: fun, and lots of it! This man made island, accessible via a small bridge from the main Singapore island, is jam-packed full of entertaining things to do, many of which are geared towards families with young kids.
The many attractions on offer at Sentosa include the expansive Resorts World, Universal Studios Singapore, Tiger Sky Tower, Singapore Butterfly & Insect Kingdom, and one of the largest collections of aquatic animals in the world, SEA Aquarium, all of which continue to draw repeat visitors from all over Asia.
Beautifully restored, Thian Hock Keng Temple, which is dedicated to Mazu, the Goddess of the Sea, is the oldest Chinese temple in Singapore.
Built-in 1839 with the support of prominent members of the Hokkien community, such as philanthropist Tan Tock Seng, Thian Hock Keng Temple is Singapore's oldest Chinese temple.
Dedicated to Mazu, the Goddess of the Sea, early Chinese immigrants came here to give thanks for their safe passage across the vast waves of the South China Sea.
At the temple, take in the remarkable architecture in the traditional southern Chinese style.
Keep an eye out for the detailed carvings and sculptures of dragons, phoenixes, and deities, as well as the colorful broken porcelain on the roof ridges, a Fujian decorating technique.
Amazingly, not a single nail was used in the original construction of the temple, which is now a gazetted national monument and managed by the Singapore Hokkien Huay Kuan.
MINT Museum of Toys houses a world-class collection of vintage toys and collectible items in an international award-winning contemporary building on 26 Seah Street.
Since its inauguration, the museum has expanded its collection, amassing over 50,000 items, 8000 of which are on display in the museum. The toys and items hail from over 40 countries and range in date from the 1840s to 1970s. These are displayed across the rooftop, basement and 4 thematic levels of the museum: Outerspace, Characters, Childhood Favourites and Collectables.
The collection is made up of various key collections, including Batman, Dan Dare, Japanese character and space-related toys, and collectibles. In addition to toys, the museum houses a collection of confectionary vintage tin boxes, large-item displays, such as Mobo horses and pedal cars, as well as original enamel advertising signs. Over the years, these have been incorporated into various exhibitions and programs run by the museum, serving as windows into the past as well as inspirations for the present.
Today, the MINT Museum of Toys serves diverse and expanding audiences, including tourists, families, collectors, artists, and students. It continues to fascinate and inspire the imaginations of audiences, taking them on a journey of rediscovery to rekindle that Moment of Imagination and Nostalgia with Toys (MINT).
Southeast Asia's first Hollywood movie theme park, Universal Studios Singapore™, features an enticing selection of attractions, rides and entertainment for families and thrill seekers. Indeed, 18 out of the 24 movie-themed rides here were designed just for the Singapore park.
There are seven uniquely-designed zones, each themed after icons of the movie world. You will find the renowned Hollywood Walk of Fame at the Hollywood zone. As you venture into New York, the landscape evolves into impressive city skylines, including a mockup of a subway entrance. Here, you can step onto a movie set and experience the destructive force of a hurricane, with special effects produced by Steven Spielberg.
Clarke Quay and the surrounding Riverside area presents Singapore’s most exciting nightlife scenes, as well as a handful of excellent restaurants good for dining by the waters' edge any time of day. Lining the two riverbanks just upstream from the administrative and financial districts, old colonial shop-houses and moored Chinese junks of Clarke Quay and Boat Quay have been converted into chic pubs, restaurants and nightclubs.